Superfood Salmon Salad with 5 serves of Vegetables
A great 'go-to' meal for when you can't be bothered but want something nutritious. Best bit is that's its easy to adapt based on what ingredients you have available.
Forget the cook books - this meal was actually inspired by an advert!
It was an advert by John West for their Red Salmon that included a recipe for a Morrocan Spiced Salmon and Quinoa Salad. It appealed because:
- it looks like so many meals I cook anyway
- reminded me to keep fish in my diet and how simple it can be
- great way to use up abandoned or half used vegetables
- great way to blitz your 'vegetable' quota for the day
A kind of go to meal for when you need dinner, want it to be healthy, quick and nutritious, but can't be bothered putting too much thought or effort in it.
The link to the recipe is here - as what you will see below is actually very different! It turns out I didn't have too many ingredients and I didn't want to include a dressing, which is where the 'Moroccan' part of this recipe came from.
One meal - 5 serves of vegetables
What's great about this meal is that it includes 5 serves of vegetables. To be absolutely honest the flavour in mine was a bit pedestrian. It was more a 'functional' meal - e..g. nutritious, quick, easy, didn't require a lot of preparation or finesse. - and I got to use up vegetables that I couldn't think of anything to do with.
If you want this as a warm salad (as I did) - it is easy to do it as a one pan dish by putting the vegetables into the pot, just before the quinoa finishes cooking.
Easy, one pot step to a VERY nutritious dinner
A note about which type of tinned salmon to use
I spent a huge amount of time in the tinned fish aisle of the supermarket before making this.
I was wrought with indecision! Trying to balance best price, best size, maximum nutritional value was hard!
e.g. the 95 g tin of salmon in springw ater was the ideal size. The 210 gram tin, (which I eventually bought) meant I was either going to have a very large meal, or be stuck with half a tin of salmon I needed to work out what to do with.
In the end I went for the larger tin - and made the bigger meal and keep some for lunch. The reason is that there was a huge difference in the quantity of Omega 3 and Omega 6 in the different types of tins of salmon. This really surprised me, and reinforced the need to read food labels.
A note about dressing
I often don't use dressing. As a kid it often put me off salads - it seemed to make everything 'slimy'. As an adult I've discovered some amazing dressings and how to use them to add to, not detract from the salad. However, even in dressings you make yourself there can be quite a lot of calories. For me I quite often choose to forgo these calories (soooooo many other places I can channel them) and the effort of making dressing and simply squeeze lemon or lime over my salad or sprinkle on some coconut balsamic.
TIPS, Hacks and Swaps
- Don't have the vegetables in the recipe on hand - simply swap in what you do have
- Don't like / have quinoa, swap it for rice or cauliflower rice
- Want to make it even quicker - use ready cooked rice, or if you've been organised, a packet of frozen quinoa from your freezer!
- Don't like salmon- use tinned tuna instead
- Don't like warm salads - follow the instructions in the original recipe from Jon West
- Want more flavour - use the recipe for the Moroccan Dressing in the original recipe
- Want more crunch - add some nuts. In the recipe I am going to suggest adding chopped walnuts - I think they would have really added some wow factor to this recipe. The other option is to just cook the quinoa and add all the other ingredients raw
- Meal size - !/4 cup of quinoa makes quite a large meal, for a smaller meal use 3 tablespoons of quinoa and 8 tablespoons of water for cooking
- Don't have or like coriander - use parsley pistachios would also work well
Servings - one | Difficulty - very easy | Time - 10 - 15 minutes
Number pots 1
1/4 cup quinoa
1 can of tinned salmon - 95 gram tin for a small meal, 210 gram tin for a larger meal
Mix of chopped and diced vegetables. I used half a cup (40 grams) each of:
- red capsicum
2 cups kale, spinach or rocket
1/4 cup chickpeas
1/4 cup avocado
2 tablespoons chopped walnuts
large handful coriander
- Rinse quinoa, then put in saucepan with 3/4 cup of water. Cover with a lid, bring to a gentle boil and then simmer on low heat for 15 minutes
- At the 12 minute mark add the vegetables you want cooked vs raw. I added the kale, zucchini and corn. Stir around and make sure there is enough moisture for another 3 minutes of cooking.
- Put the lid back on and continue simmering for another 3 minutes
- Gently stir with a fork, then put lid back on and leave sit for 4 / 10 minutes
- Transfer to a serving dish and top with red capsicum, avocado, walnuts and coriander
- Squeeze lemon or lime and then serve, or toss with dressing of choice
Links you might be interested in
I use calouriecounter.com to get an indication of the nutritional information. This is still a work in progress and I am working on validating which is the best tool. However it seems like a well used and well trusted site so I am fairly comfortable with the accuracy.